Personal Retreat

Now that the boys are back in school, it’s time for my Fall personal retreat day!

I generally try to block one day near the beginning of each semester for this important practice. My routine is simple but effective and soul-satisfying for me: after getting the boys off to school, I start the day with a mind- and body-cleansing run. I then head out to my local Barnes & Noble for a focused time of prayer, listening to God, reviewing projects and commitments for the months ahead, and setting goals — putting all of this in writing in my journal, calendar and Evernote, as appropriate. After a late lunch at whichever restaurant sounds good that day, I usually continue my reflection and planning at home in the company of a sleeping puppy, wrapping up with enough time for my mind to re-enter the present before the boys re-enter the house.

I always look forward to my retreat days, and today is no exception. For me, it marks the changing of the seasons: not just from the heat of summer to the coolness of fall, but from a more relaxed pace at both home and work, to a new focus and energy on projects that have been percolating in my mind and heart the last few months. I am thankful for the season of rest, but by the fall I am recharged and ready to go, truly itching to get back t work.

If you take a personal retreat, what practice(s) have you found to work for you?


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